Everyone thinks about food and family on Thanksgiving, and then many of us follow those thoughts with football.
The NFL has wanted to make itself a Thanksgiving tradition ever since they first started playing these games in 1920.
While we have grown accustomed to seeing the Dallas Cowboys and Detroit Lions play on this day, Thanksgiving continues to get bigger in the NFL and five games are being played this year.
One of the best parts of the Thanksgiving games is when they bring the player of the game to the sideline to eat some turkey after the game.
There have been many great turkey eating performances on Thanksgiving, and here are my 10 best of all-time.
NFL Thanksgiving Heroes
9.) Sterling Sharpe vs. Dallas Cowboys
The Green Bay Packers got bested 42-31 by the Cowboys in 1994, but it was a person on the losing team that stole the show.
Packers wide receiver Sterling Sharpe dominated the game to the tune of nine catches for 122 yards and four touchdowns.
As if his day wasn’t impressive enough, the Packers as a team had only 277 yards of total offense, so Sharpe himself accounted for nearly half their offense.
It’s a shame his effort wasn’t good enough for a win.
(Photo by James V. Biever/Getty Images)
7.) Barry Sanders vs. Chicago Bears
It probably speaks to Sanders’ greatness that this performance isn’t higher up on the list.
In 1977, Sanders’ Detroit Lions annihilated the Bears 55-20.
While the game itself didn’t look that entertaining, Sanders put on a side show on his own when he rushed for 167 yards and three touchdowns.
It was just another day at the office for one of the game’s greats.
(MATT CAMPBELL/AFP/Getty Images)
6.) Walter Stanley vs. Detroit Lions
I hope you’re not tired of seeing the Packers and Lions already.
In 1986, Stanley’s Packers and the Lions had an amazing battle that went down to the very end.
Stanley finished for four grabs for 124 yards and two touchdowns, and while that would have been a good day on its own, it was what he did on special teams that has him on this list.
With just 41 seconds left, Stanley returned a punt 83 yards for the go-ahead score and the Packers would go on to win 44-40.
(Photo by Ronald C. Modra/Sports Imagery/Getty Images)